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Diseases of the ragdoll breed

Part of a healthy breeding and a serious cattery is to examine your cats for diseases they are particularly prone to

 

Within the ragdoll breed, several hereditary diseases are known, which you can make sure to avoid by testing your animals. This is done i.a. by taking DNA tests

Here I will explain what we are testing for and the importance of having knowledge of these

All our breeding cats are tested for HCM and PKD

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HCM

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Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) is the most common heart disease in cats.

 

The disease is also seen in humans, and is also one of the most frequent causes of sudden death in people under the age of 30. HCM is a disease of the heart muscle itself, where it becomes strongly thickened, especially on the left side of the heart. The muscle changes lead to the heart finding it difficult to relax, and the passage of blood into and out of the left ventricle becomes difficult.

 

The disease also causes connective tissue embedment and impaired blood supply to the heart muscle, which predisposes to the development of disturbances in the heart's rhythm and local muscle death. It has been reported that the disease manifests itself more often in male cats than in female cats. Some breeds, such as the British Shorthair, Maine Coon, Ragdoll, Cornish Rex, Sphynx and Persian are said to be more predisposed to the disease than others. However, HCM is seen sporadically in most breeds, including also in "ordinary domestic cats"

You test your cats by doing a DNA swap, which is sent to England and the cat's kidneys are scanned once a year, from when it is 1 year old until it is 7 years old. It is a quick and painless way to test the cat and it has a huge importance for our breeding, as one of our basic values is to breed healthy and healthy cats

PKD

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Polycystic kidney disease PKD - Polycystic Kidney Disease - is a hereditary kidney disease that occurs in Persians and cats related to Persians, including ragdolls. The disease has been known since  the mid-1960s, and is widespread throughout the world.

 

In the last 10 years, the disease has become more known because it has been found that the disease is hereditary.    

The word polycystic means:  poly = many,  cystic = fluid bladder.

The cats are born with cysts  (fluid blisters) in the kidneys. In newborn kittens, they are usually smaller than in adult cats. The cysts can vary in size, from 1 mm to 4 cm. With age, there may be more and they usually grow in size. That is why you find this variation in the size of the cysts.

As the disease progresses, the normal kidney tissue will be replaced by the cystic tissue, which is why the kidney's normal function is gradually reduced.

PKD is also examined by a DNA swap and, in the same way, has a decisive impact on whether we want to breed on the cat or not.

PG free

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A study has been made about dwarfism in the ragdoll breed over many years. Here it was found that a cat called Patriarca Gucci (PG) was present in all pedigrees where dwarf kittens appeared. 

Kittens with dwarfism unfortunately do not live a very long life and must be euthanized before they reach adulthood.

If two cats with PG (i.e. the cat Patriarca) in the pedigree are mated, there is a risk of having kittens with dwarfism, which as a breeder must be avoided.

A cat or kitten that has PG in its pedigree on one side is as healthy, beautiful and healthy as a cat without PG

It is therefore an important task as a breeder to ensure that the lines in both cats' pedigrees are examined when we make a mating. In this way we avoid passing on hereditary diseases and instead do everything to retain all the good things we love about the ragdoll breed.

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